Talk:Igor Stravinsky

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Archives of this talk page[edit]

An archive has been created of past discussions on this Talk page. Future editors who archive further, please link and summarize the archive in this section – and sign with "~~~~".

  • /Archive 1 – created page, and moved there all discussion topics through 2005, and selected, apparently moot, topics through February 2007. —Turangalila (talk) 10:01, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
added {{archive box}}. Magic♪piano 14:08, 13 January 2009 (UTC)


In the article there is this claim:

[As he himself said, with these premieres his intention was "[to send] them all to hell".]

Anyone know the source for this? I have never seen, or heard of, this in years of studying Stravinsky ... but then, of course, I haven't read absolutely everything. So this quote surprised me a little, and I should be really glad to know where it comes from.



I remember reading something like that, yep, but can't remember where... --Deadworm222 23:53, Mar 23, 2005 (UTC)
I can't find a source for this other than wikipedia and it's mirror sites.
Other quotes by Stravinsky on the night appear to contradict this motive:
"I left the hall in rage," Stravinsky said of the crowd's reaction. "The music was so familiar to me; I loved it, and I could not understand why people who had not yet heard it wanted to protest in advance."
(cited in "The Enjoyment of Music (Ninth edition)", Norton, in addition to countless online sources). I don't think his intention was to incite a riot or rejection of the work. Moltovivace 00:12, 13 March 2006 (UTC)

Incidently, the Guardian magazine, G2, quoted this in February 2006. Doubt they would make it up. But it could be lazy journalists using poor research. Who knows with journalists...

ALSO: This quote "For a time, he preserved a ring of emigré Russian friends and contacts, but eventually found that this did not sustain his intellectual and professional life. " under 'America' should surely be sourced?


Just a quick remark. Stravinsky borrowed for his pulcinella ballet musical motives from Pergolesi, as the article tells. However, it is now know from some time the music he was borrowing from was not Pergolesi's but from a dutch nobleman who wanted to remain anonymous: Baron Van Wassenaer. See

Stravinsky and Fascism[edit]

Since I don't have the time to do this myself - maybe somebody else could do some research in this field... ?! Apparently Stravinsky was quite an admirer of Mussolini and was regarded as the official composer of Fascism in 1930's Italy. I've added a rather lame sentence on this at the end of the introduction. Maybe somebody could expand on this somewhere in the article? Of course such political involvement raises questions as to the fascist character of Stravinsky's musical aesthetic - at least during a phase of his life.

While I think it's significant enough to be mentioned somewhere in the article, I strongly suggest NOT putting it at the end of the introduction, which is where you normally put the "thesis statement" or fullest overall significance of the composer. It probably belongs in chronological order in the bio, with some details to flesh it out. (Assuming it is true; I've never heard this before myself, and works like the Symphony in Three Movements are usually interpreted as a fierce attack on fascism.) Antandrus (talk) 16:42, 1 October 2005 (UTC)
Actually the Grove article goes into this in some detail. Stravinsky did extravagantly praise Mussolini, calling him (late 1920s) as the "savior of Italy ... and let us hope, of Europe". The Nazis included Stravinsky's music in their Entartete Musik exhibit, and infuriated him by mistaking him for a Jew--evidently Stravinsky also was not without anti-Semitism, and it appears in his letters. Antandrus (talk) 16:55, 1 October 2005 (UTC)

I'm not surprised you hadn't heard of Stravinsky's fascist leanings - I was pretty astonished myself, having (as I suppose we all do) a rather facile understanding of fascist culture. I came upon this in connection with the American poet Ezra Pound, who (as I suppose you do know) was a staunch supporter of fascist Italy. In this sense I've been thinking of starting a 'Fascist culture' discussion with regard to the 'Fascism' article which hardly makes any reference to the cultural implications of Fascism at all. We tend to think of European 1920-30's intellectuals as hounded into exile - and yet a leading number of artists and thinkers were rather enthusiastic about right-wing tyranny: the philosophers Heidegger, Oswald Spengler and Arnold Gehlen (in fact the whole German so-called 'Conservative revolution'), the legal theorist Carl Schmitt, the German writer Ernst Jünger, the Norwegian writer Knut Hamsun, Ezra Pound - Stravinsky! - d'Annunzio, Marinetti and the Italian Futurist movement, even the German writer Thomas Mann was thinking of returning to the Third Reich from his exile in the mid-1930's because he thought that Germany might be undergoing a revolution worthy of support. As for my 'lame' sentence in the introduction: what I rather like about it is the idea of shocking readers into an alternative perspective on Stravinsky (and I suppose established avant-garde culture). But I know what you mean - do as you think fit.

Re: "As for my 'lame' sentence in the introduction: what I rather like about it is the idea of shocking readers into an alternative perspective on Stravinsky....":
Wikipedia is not a place for epater le bourgeois or any sort of "shocking". Articles should be factual and balanced and free from bias of any sort--which means that editors should not have hidden--or not so hidden--agendas or axes to grind. TheScotch (talk) 06:43, 6 July 2008 (UTC)


In his book Philosophy of Modern Music (1948) Theodor Adorno calls Stravinsky an acrobat, a civil servant, a tailor's dummy, hebephrenic, psychotic, infantile, fascist, and devoted to making money.

Many of those designations refer to what are considered stylistic periods, the alleged infantilism pertains to this category, while others are said to label oftener employed techniques apparent in Stravinsky's music, those believed to artificially sustain a leaning known as comprising a certain disorder for example, but none to foolishly delineate Stravinsky's personality. In the appendix we find the author opposing this misconception, fortunately losing the article's acceptance by degrees:

Nothing would be more false than to interpret Stravinky's music analogously to what a German fascist once called the sculpting of the mentally ill. Rather its concern is to dominate schizophrenic traits through the aesthetic consciousness. (In so doing, it would hope to vindicate insanity as true health.)

Edited mainly for aesthetic reasons. I'm very pleased with the changes already made. Saiken 10:48, 25 July 2007 (UTC)

Currently, all the information within the "Reception" section of the article falls under the rubric "Unfavorable criticism". Presumably Stravinsky's music was received with some favorable criticism too or he could have hardly achieved his dominant stature. Without mention of this favorable criticism the article is greatly distorted--particularly considering that all quoted criticism in this article is extramusical and, with the exception of Lambert's, idiotic. TheScotch (talk) 07:17, 18 July 2008 (UTC)
Well, on the other hand, presumably some of his music wasn't innovative and influential, and the article is greatly distorted. Hyacinth (talk) 20:36, 18 July 2008 (UTC)
Satie's Vanity Fair article was favorable. Didn't you notice? --Francis Schonken (talk) 20:50, 18 July 2008 (UTC)

I've never read the "Satie's 'Vanity Fair' article", and I've no idea whether it's favorable. Satie is not currently quoted in this Wikipedia article saying anything favorable toward Stravinsky. Satie's perpetual sarcasm is often amusing, but this "great Stravinsky...little Satie" bit is puerile and certainly not worth quoting, nor is his rejection of the notion of genius relevant.

I appreciate that some small effort has been made to balance this section since I last posted here, but it's not nearly enough. I think we should start by removing most of we've already got here. The idea that Stravinsky's music should be reviled because Stravinsky happens not to have been preaching Socialism is too absurd to be worth attempting to refute. Blitzstein and Adorno are welcome to that opinion, but this article should leave that to them (it can appear in Blitzstein and Adorno articles) and find some real criticism. TheScotch (talk) 07:47, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Pardon? In *this* Wikipedia article Satie is quoted as writing "I admire you: are you not the Great Stravinsky?". Even if you didn't read the Vanity Fair article, you can't assume it to be negative towards Stravinsky. --Francis Schonken (talk) 15:40, 4 August 2008 (UTC)
Let me start by saying that the passage quoted from Satie's article is ironic, as is noted in the WP article. Myself, I can only read irony in such an expression directed at anyone.
On the other hand, I can't understand why deleting judgments by notable individuals is so often mentioned as a (or should I say "the") solution to (perceived) lopsided reception sections. In my view, the solution to achieve balance is to include favorable judgments by others and point out the preponderance of opinion; this should be particularly easy for someone of Stravinsky's stature.
Moreover, as to moving Blitzstein's and Adorno's judgments to their respective articles, I don't think is a good idea. You can't have text in a music critic's article, such as Adorno is, on what he said on anyone we can imagine, X, Y, Z,.... On the contrary I think it is relevant to include such text on X's, Y's, Z's,... articles.
--Atavi (talk) 17:07, 5 August 2008 (UTC)

Re. "Let me start by saying that the passage quoted from Satie's article is ironic" – is it? It's certainly not indicated as such in the Satie article ("Since 1911 [Satie] had been on friendly terms with Igor Stravinsky..."). --Francis Schonken (talk) 18:12, 5 August 2008 (UTC)

For entirely different reasons for each article (Stravinsky and Satie), I undertook the tedious task of digging through the history. It was not a surprise to see that it was you, Francis, who had written in the Satie article the "friendly terms with Stravinsky" excerpt. But I was greatly surprised indeed to see that it was you also, who wrote the section in the Stravinsky article about Satie's views.
I'm mentioning this, because it automatically invalidated some of the argument I would have made.
So, it is me only, who has not read either the correspondence between the two or the Vanity Fair article. I can only go by what the WP articles say.
Friendly terms is vast area, but even being the closest of friends does not preclude use of irony.
As I've said before, in the sentence "I admire you: are you not the Great Stravinsky? I am but little Erik Satie." by itself I read irony; so it seems did you.
Furthermore, what follows —Satie's interpretation of greatness— strengthens this assumption.
Not having read Satie's writings in their entirety already limits my ability to accurately evaluate what he might have meant. Of course then, I can always be wrong...
--Atavi (talk) 13:16, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

Re. "by itself I read irony": read in it what you want, that's why the sentence was quoted verbatim. Now, it's something entirely different to say that your interpretation should be voiced in the Wikipedia article: that would be original research, and there's a wikipedia policy: Wikipedia:No original research.

Re. "... so it seems did you": I didn't as a matter of fact, and I have no clue where you got the idea that I would have. Also, whether I did is irrelevant, per the WP:NOR rule.

Further, and more importantly, even if some irony was involved on Satie's part (one never is really sure I'd say), there's no contradiction with being respectful (I used the word "deference"), or over-all favourable: that's why it isn't possible to have the Satie quote under a subsection title "Unfavorable criticism", and that is the reason why I removed that subsection title.

Here's (maybe) another surprise: I worked on the Wikipedia:Criticism page, around the time when Hyacinth introduced the Criticism section of the Stravinsky article as an example there (see Wikipedia:Criticism#Examples - per the recommendations of that page, the "Criticism" section was however renamed "Reception" in the Stravinsky article in the mean while). --Francis Schonken (talk) 15:51, 6 August 2008 (UTC)

I can't believe I'm devoting so much time to a single paragraph...
Well, it is quite clear that we will have to delete your phrase "With a touch of irony" and stick to the verbatim quotation.
But I think that also the sentence "Satie's attitude towards the Russian composer is marked by deference" might be original research.
I've deleted the sentence "Satie had met Stravinsky for the first time in 1910" because I think it is of no significance.

--Atavi (talk) 19:00, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

An odd resurrection, but User:Jerome Kohl asked (in an article comment) where a particular Satie letter was published; the WP contains an excerpt from that letter. In answering, I can only provide the link to an edit by User:Francis Schonken in August 2008 in combination with this discussion. In the edit summary, "Rest may be interpretation (referenced to Volta BTW), but this is fact explaining circumstance)" User:Francis Schonken suggests that Volta at least refers to the letter (if it is not included in its entirety) in the book "Volta, Ornella. 1989. Satie Seen through His Letters." --Atavi (talk) 03:38, 12 December 2010 (UTC)

Sorry, maybe I'm thick, but I don't follow this. Even though I cannot see how Francis Schonken's edit summary can be interpreted as meaning "maybe it is quoted in Volta", this supposition doesn't change the fact that it is not so referenced in this article. If it is quoted in Volta, then it should say so; if not, then a source where this letter—or at least the passage quoted from it—can be read is needed. Is there something I am not understanding?—Jerome Kohl (talk) 04:24, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
You're not really missing anything -and you're not thick.... You are correct in saying that the actual citation seems to be missing. But let me explain what I was trying to say, even as I am unsure whether you meant "cannot see" or "can see".
In 2008, Francis Schonken and myself were discussing/arguing whether Satie was being ironic in his expression of admiration for Stravinsky, "I admire you: are you not the Great Stravinsky? I am but little Erik Satie". Cut to: the edit by Francis Schonken I referred to earlier. In his summary he says "rest may be interpretation, but referenced to Volta". The "interpretation" is whether or not Satie was being ironic. Since Francis Schonken seems to be saying that Volta suggests Satie was being ironic, Volta must be at least quoting the letter. Since the title of Volta's book is in fact "Satie Seen through His Letters", I further speculated that the whole letter (or indeed much of Satie's correspondence) is in the book. On top of that, at the end of the paragraph in the WP article, there is a reference to Volta.
As I mentioned above, I am not claiming that the Volta reference "exists" for the letter, but guessing. I have no access to the book by Volta. Obviously whoever put the original reference at the end of the paragraph and/or Francis Schonken should be able to provide such a reference or refute its validity.
I know I haven't been really helpful. In the end your call for a citation still stands justified.
--Atavi (talk) 23:54, 25 December 2010 (UTC)
Thank you for the clarification, and for the acknowledgement. (And, FWIW, I did mean "cannot see".) Irony is very difficult to establish, in the absence of testimony from the speaker ("I was being ironic"). What can more readily be established is that some observer believes a statement was ironic. If Volta says so, then that is all that is needed. Unfortunately, no one seems able to lay hands on a copy of that source.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 05:29, 26 December 2010 (UTC)

Issues with the article[edit]

The article is quite well-written, my issues are exclusively technical and style points. However, I was guided to this page by a list of long-featured articles not yet featured on the Main Page, but I do not believe this one is ready. It currently has almost no (only 1) inline citation for all of that text and has very large lists of compositions that should be summarized and split-off into "List of musical works by Igor Stravinsky" or something like that. As I said, mostly technical, and I'm sure any of the original authors can fix them easily. Staxringold 11:51, 8 May 2006 (UTC)

I intend to list this at Featured Article Review some time in the next few months. Tony 16:32, 7 September 2006 (UTC)

This article has no sources why is it a FA? It should be taken off until it has some sources. Sorry that was me I forgot to sign in.--Team6and7 23:45, 11 September 2006 (UTC)


I added {{Infobox musical artist}} to the article. I am unsure of some of the information, so if anyone sees anything that can be added or changed, please do so. Thanks. – Heaven's Wrath   Talk  20:00, 2 October 2006 (UTC)

No inline citations?[edit]

How in the world was this article featured as Today's FA? It has absolutely no inline citations or other reference marks. A great article, but without some kind of footnotes, it really doesn't deserve FA status, let alone Main Page FA status. -- Cielomobile talk / contribs 00:53, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

Yeah, this is really bothering me too. --Wafulz
Ditto.QuixoticKate 16:04, 22 November 2006 (UTC)
Yes, it's unusual for Today's Featured Article to have been promoted to FA so long ago: take a look at Wikipedia:Featured article candidates/Igor Stravinsky and you'll see it was promoted in July 2004 (although the last "support" vote came a year later!), back when inline citations were not yet expected of FAs, and back when being well-written and interesting was. —Angr 16:13, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

Saying that someone "sucked" at something doesn't seem like appropriate language for an encyclopedia (in the paragraph about his early learning). 17:01, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

That was doubtless vandalism. If it hasn't been removed already, I'll remove it now. Thanks for noticing! —Angr 17:43, 22 November 2006 (UTC)
Yeah the fact it has no inline citations is worrying. I expect to see it at WP:FAR soon. LuciferMorgan 21:37, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

2 Contrabassoons Issue[edit]

The statement that The Rite is the first work to involve two contrabassoons is dubious. I think that that was done earlier by Berlioz, probably in the Symphonie funebre et triomphale. (It might also occur in a very small handful of works by other composers prior to Stravinsky.) BTW, The Rite also uses two bass clarinets, which was also very unusual at the time.



I'm amazed to see that there is no reference anywhere to Richard Taruskin's "Stravinsky and the Russian Traditions" (1996), a 2-volume study that challanges much of the received wisdom about Stravinsky. This is an absolutely major source, highly praised by critics and the recipient of many awards, including the Kurt Weill Foundation Prize for the best book of 1996 on the musical stage. I've added this study to the "Sources," but since I'm no authority on Stravinsky, I'm reluctant to incorporate Taruskin's findings into this article; but I definitely think that someone should take on this task.

Please sign you posts on talk pages. Why add it as a source when nobody has added anything from it?--Wormsie 22:49, 28 December 2006 (UTC)

Pablo Picasso's portrait of Stravinsky[edit]

I do love that picture; we need it in better quality, since this is such a popular article! Glassonion1542 13:44, 11 December 2006 (UTC)

Stravinsky's Commissions[edit]

Doesn't Craft say somewhere that Stravinsky often sought out the commissions after he had begun composing the work? Signinstranger 16:53, 19 March 2007 (UTC)

Treatment of the music...[edit]

As far as I can see, it looks to me like the bio sect. just needs someone to go through and find sources for stuff, & maybe clarify a point or two. However, leaving aside the citation problems, the entire treament of Stravinsky's music in this article as it stands — ie: "Stylistic periods"; "Influence and innovation"; and "Criticism" — strikes me as problematic at the very least. It's full of assertions w/ no source, dubious or at least debatable analysis, and sweeping generalizations. A few random points:

  • Doesn't Firebird draw on folk mythology"? I actually thought Petroushka was drawn, at least in part, from the Commedia dell'arte.
  • Is the Augurs of Spring really the "most famous" bit of Le Sacre? I would have thought the bassoon solo for general listeners, the Danse Sacrale for either case the Cortege du Sage is the best illustration of ostinato.
[side note - a handy way of counting the famous 11/4 bar at the Glorification de l'Elue is to use the mnemonic: "Ig - Or - Stra - Vin - Sky - Is - A - Son - Of - A - Bitch...")
[side note - With reference to the above, I've also heard that it's common for orchestral musicians to pastiche the excruciatingly high bassoon solo by setting the words 'I'm not an Enlgish Horn' to the tune.
  • Most of the section on "motif" could literally apply to nearly every composer from, say, Ockeghem to Crumb. A far more apt description of Stravinsky's destinctive style is hinted at in the (overlong) paragraph on Serialism in the Lead (especially the bolded part): Their intricacy notwithstanding, these pieces share traits with all of Stravinsky's earlier output; rhythmic energy, the construction of extended melodic ideas out of a few cells comprising only two or three notes, and clarity of form, instrumentation, and of utterance. This isn't developed in the body.
  • The term Pastiche is used in the article w/ two very different meanings - one for the layered ostinati in Le Sacre, and another for quotations in Pulcinella and Le Baiser du Fee...this is not completely incorrect in dictionary terms but in context it's confusing...I'd prefer a different word wrt Le Sacre, though I'm blanking at the moment on the right one.
  • The discussion of Neoclassicism. oy. The term itself is a constant problem almost on the order of "atonal" or "romantic", overused to the point of meaninglessness, but specifically,
    • The article currently contradicts itself; Strauss was a neoclassicist nohewasn't. Igor's Neoclassical period started w/ Pulcinella in 1920 – no he "announced" it w/ the Octet 3 years later (the former leaves Les Noces as a weird outlier)...
    • Either starting point ignores radical developments earlier on--L'Histoire du Soldat is glossed over when I'm pretty sure I learned in school that it's perhaps the most crucial turning point in all of Stravinsky – it may not be "neoclassical" in the sense that, say, the Symphony in C is, but still it's pretty damn important. Relatedly, the article neglects to mention the effect of World War I on Stravinsky's style: both the adjustments born of economic necessity and the change in worldview occasioned by the catastrophe are huge for his history and music history in general.
    • I really can't think of a composer whose music has less to do w/ Stravinsky's than Max Reger.
    • Appalachian Spring is a neoclassical piece? this is the first I've heard of it.
    • two things from the Lead: 1) Fugue is not a form. 2) Verdi??
    • I'm not denying neoclassicism exists, or is important in Stravinsky, but this idea of "nostalgia" or "harkening back" can be way overstated. Listen to the outer movements of the Symphony in Three Movements and explain to me how it recalls Mozart.
  • Stravinsky was a great orchestrator; I'm not 100% sure he's considered an innovative or influential one, except perhaps in his use of percussion.
  • The Criticism section is just weird. The Adorno seems a dubious summation of Adorno's thoughts, and is difficult to understand. The Constant Lambert desperately needs a citation; and the Satie bit isn't even criticism, except for an obscure reference at the end to something Cocteau may have written. I'm pretty sure Cocteau and Stravinsky were on ok terms, anyway.

I won't go on. I know I'm supposed to be bold and fix stuff rather than just bitch at extravagant length on the Talk page, but these are just first thoughts to hopefully start a process. Adequately tackling a subject as bottomless as Stravinsky's music and his place in music history will take alot of time and research, and hopefully the collaboration of several editors. Ideally, I think, the "finished" article should represent multiple expert-POV's, and should include at least one or two quotes from scholars on S's style & development — and at least one or two quotes from composers on his influence.

I think most musicians would rank Stravinsky at least in the top 5 or 7 most important composers ever. This needs to become a genuine FA. —Turangalila (talk) 08:55, 3 April 2007 (UTC)

Robert Craft[edit]

I read somewhere (I think the book was written by Green or Rosen or someone of there likeness) that a lot of Stravinsky's 12 tone compositions are suspected to have been written by Craft, since he was so persuassive in modulating this transformation in Stravinsky's stlye. I believe the author also wrote that, in Stravinsky's later years, more compositions, very different from Stravinsky's style, were being composed like crazy, noting that Stravinsky wouldn't have been able to have an outburst of creativity at this time in his life. However, I can't find this source and I was wondering if someone could help me find it so that maybe we could put it in the article.

Wouldn't have been able to have an outburst of creativity at that time of his life? Why not? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:56, 21 November 2011 (UTC)
I've never heard that; while I can imagine that someone would say it, it seems crazy, considering a number of things: the line of development Stravinsky took, through partial-row pieces, parts-of-pieces-with-partial-rows, and other experimentation (Agon, the Cantata, IMDT, etc.), his unusual use of rows throughout, as though consciously avoiding the way Schoenberg used them, and the consistent instrumentation tricks/knack and rhythmic character of his late music, which followed his previous practice. Listening to Threni, Canticum Sacrum, and especially the Requiem Canticles, it's just impossible to imagine these pieces being by anyone but Stravinsky. But if someone famous published such a commentary, by all means let us know. Cheers, Antandrus (talk) 02:58, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
I also haven't heard this, though I'm not totally up on research on late Stravinsky since Joe Straus's excellent book. Generally speaking there is a dispute on the extent to which Craft crafted many of the interviews and suggested things for Stravinsky to say, which Stravinsky agreed to, and then were given as Stravinsky's own thoughts--it's a commonplace in academic circles, possibly in print in the new Oxford History of Music--RT is good at taking on these controversies. It is also generally acknowledged that Craft's knowledge of the second Viennese school and enthusiasm about them rubbed off on Stravinsky. But as far as Craft's authorship, I doubt it. But the man (RC) did borrow a nice pen of mine once when I was an undergraduate, and didn't return it, so I'll suspect anything.  :) -- Myke Cuthbert (talk) 06:40, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
Speaking as someone who is up-to-date on late-Stravinsky research, this claim about Craft is utterly preposterous. It would suppose that Stravinsky took down Craft's compositions by dictation, or at least copied out all of the sketches from Craft, since there is copious sketch material, all of it in Stravinsky's handwriting. These sketches and fair copies also exhibit numerous Stravinsky traits dating back as far as 1915, such as the habitual use of a rastrum (multi-nibbed pen) instead of preprinted staff paper, cut-and-paste technique to re-order material (including use of carbon-paper copies)), omission of clefs (sometimes leading to pitch "mistakes" in the process of composition), and so on. See Joseph Straus's book for details.--Jerome Kohl 21:57, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

Pulcinella and Petrushka[edit]

We need your help here Talk:Pulcinella (ballet) about the relationship of Pulcinella and Petrushka. --Atavi 10:47, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

Zappa and Stravinsky[edit]

I rewrote the bit about Zappa and Stravinsky. Two possible problems are that I'm not an expert, and that perhaps I wrote too much. I have also found an interesting article originally printed in the NY Times, but I'm reluctant to link to it anywhere in the main article. Here it is: [1]

I like what you did with the Zappa reference. Confining the gory details to a footnote rather than letting them sprawl out in the article helps enormously, and I don't think you've written too much. I'm not an expert, either (on Zappa, I mean; Stravinsky is another matter, though my expertise is mostly confined to his "mature" period--after 1954 ;-). Of course, Zappa is just one amongst thousands and thousands of musicians who might be cited as influenced by Stravinsky, so this whole "influence" thing could get badly out of hand.--Jerome Kohl 21:46, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
Thanks. I agree and I also fear that the influence section could get out of hand. We shall see.--Atavi 22:27, 19 June 2007 (UTC)

I don't see that Stravinsky's putative influence on Zappa has any bearing whatsoever on Stravinsky's works, life, significance, or stature, and I know of no evidence to suggest that Stravinsky was in any way aware of Zappa's existence, but if Stravinsky did influence Zappa significantly then something about it may reasonably be placed in the Wikipedia Frank Zappa article--in contradistinction to this one. Also: The New York Times article referenced above may similarly be linked to the Wikipedia Frank Zappa article in contradistinction to this one. Since this version of the New York Times article includes various punctuation and spelling errors that I can't imagine getting past the Times's editors, though, it could very easily be corrupt in other ways as well and must be regarded with suspicion. TheScotch (talk) 08:51, 6 July 2008 (UTC)

Well, I think it depends on the point from where you look at it. Zappa is not a classical musician, so it is a little blurry. By that I mean that for one person Zappa might be insignificant himself or in any case that Stravinsky's influence on Zappa signifies nothing for Stravinsky's music. On the other hand, another could argue that such an influence could show Stravinsky's outreach and so on. There are a lot of pop artists that quote heavily from classical music, but that is hardly creative, while Zappa lists Stravinsky as an actual influence. Also, personally I don't see how it is important, whether Stravinsky knew of Zappa's existence, but I think this could fall again under the previous argument I've made. May I add that I'm by no means a Zappa fan.--Atavi (talk) 09:45, 6 July 2008 (UTC)

Re: "Also, personally I don't see how it is important, whether Stravinsky knew of Zappa's existence":

If Stravinsky had actually known Zappa then Zappa would have impinged on Stravinsky's life to some extent and thus possibly have some bearing on an article about--among other things--Stravinsky's life (depending how well he knew him and in what capacity).

Re: "By that I mean that for one person Zappa might be insignificant himself or in any case that Stravinsky's influence on Zappa signifies nothing for Stravinsky's music.":

How significant Zappa was is entirely irrelevant here. Stravinsky's putative influence on Zappa is a matter that concerns Zappa, not Stravinsky (I say "putative", by the way, because the evidence for even this is weak). If, on the other hand, Zappa had influenced Stravinsky significantly then Zappa could have a place in this article, but there is no evidence that Stravinsky might have been influenced by Zappa one jot.

Re: "May I add that I'm by no means a Zappa fan.":

This is also irrelevant, but since you bring it up, I'd might as well point out that especially as a Zappa appreciator (fan is short for fanatic)--I loosely followed Zappa's career for decades (enjoyed seeing him in concert, own a few Zappa records, read numerous interviews)--, I have no wish whatsoever to disparage him.

In any case, the passage I deleted was quite obviously in an entirely and glaringly inappropriate place. I have to think, also, that it was originally put in the article disingenously as a sort of plug: an advertisement.TheScotch (talk) 07:59, 10 July 2008 (UTC)

I only wanted to say that I think that there are parts in the articles about most composers, not only regarding who influenced them, which is obviously important, but also, who they influenced.
It might have been an advertisment; I don't recall whether I saw the original insertion (and I'm not inclined to dig through the article's history)
Anyway, you might be perfectly correct about this whole thing and by the way I did not think that it was your intention to disparage Zappa.
--Atavi (talk) 17:13, 10 July 2008 (UTC)

Stravinsky's qualities[edit]

I have just removed this from the article (the paragraph was about Agon being a Stravinsky mini-encyclopedia): "...rhythmic quirkiness and experimentation, harmonic ingenuity, and a deft ear for masterly orchestration." While none of it was referenced, and it was in the wrong place, I think it puts some of Stravinsky's qualities very well, and I am sure that would all be demonstrable. Are there any quotes from contemporary composers, or subsequent respected analysts, showing that they recognised these qualities in Stravinsky? --RobertGtalk 11:32, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

The first reference I mention is I think very helpful, but the second probably cannot be used as a primary reference. However, I think that Stravinsky's contributions in rhythm are so widely recognized that someone is bound to come up with a suitable reference about it soon.
Aaron Copland has characterized The Rite of Spring as the foremost achievement in orchestration in the 20th century.
I have heard Charles Hazlewood say of Copland that he had the "the rhythm, the spikiness, the raw earthy vitality of Stravinsky" in [2] near 33:30. So obviously, these are characterizations that apply to Stravinsky.
Also in various discovering music programmes I think I have heard characterizations of Stravinsky. In time I will spot them and point out. I think someone suggested that he outdid Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov in orchestration.
--Atavi 14:55, 15 November 2007 (UTC)
In [3] Leonard Slatkin says of The Rite of Spring after 10:50 "very new, bold, and innovative music"--Atavi 15:02, 15 November 2007 (UTC)
I don't know if it's helpful, but here it is:
Transcribed from this analysis of The Firebird from around 1:15, Charles Hazlewood says:
...gave him the opportunity to prove himself the equal if not even the superior to his teacher Rimsky Korsakov, to Tchaikovsky [...].
It's as if he's taking the orchestra apart, section by section and analysing it; lighting if you like the first great fuse underneath the instrumental make up of the 19th century orchestra.
I think that we can make use of the last sentence about the fuse.
--Atavi 16:26, 15 November 2007 (UTC)
Top google result:
Glass says Stravinsky is the most influential composer of the 20th century
Stravinsky’s focus on the power of rhythm and his unique orchestration clearly established him as the first 20th century composer.
--Atavi 16:41, 15 November 2007 (UTC)
From the audio in the above page, P. Glass says from around 4:34:
the idea of pushing the rhythms across the bar lines [...] led the way [...] the rhythmic structure of music became much more fluid and in a certain way spontaneous
--Atavi 17:01, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

Recent copyedit[edit]

I found the views from this article outstanding: the landscape was full of heights, summits, pinnacles, and full-flowering apotheoses! I hope I haven't upset anyone by removing them.

The section about Stravinsky's "innovations" contained lots of explanations about how they weren't really innovations, because other composers had got there first.

This bit was under the "innovation" section: I'm putting it here so it doesn't get lost:

For instance, Aaron Copland greatly admired Stravinsky, who was in many ways his model.[1] In many of his works, including the Appalachian Spring ballet, we can find Stravinsky's rhythm and vitality.[2]

…in the position I removed it from, it gave the impression that Appalachian Spring is a neo-classical work like Stravinsky's.

Finally, has anyone demonstrated that Stravinsky begat Riley & Reich? --RobertGtalk 12:30, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

The passage you mention was the result of my trying to provide citations for a passage that existed there about Copland's ballets and Stravinsky's ballets (I think The Rite of Spring in particular). It ended up giving the false impression that you describe. It can perhaps be inserted in some other more appropriate place.
--Atavi 16:37, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

RobertG, your extensive editing here has been brilliant—you are to be congratulated. The section on "innovations" sounded like a freshman-level music appreciation paper, by someone who was unfamiliar with music history before about 1850. It was also almost entirely unreferenced, which added to the amateurishness of the wild and unsupportable claims for innovation. I'm afraid I have been responsible for adding most of the calls for references, as well as for puncturing some of the unsupportable fantasies perpetrated in that section (the references to quodlibets, parody masses, and Orlando di Lasso, for example), and I think further editing is called for, perhaps removing the word "innovation" altogether. A sentence or two on Stravinsky's interest in early composers (Machaut, Gesualdo, etc.) might be a caution against making such ill-informed claims, but I'm not going to insert this information without first finding verifiable sources. As far as the Riley and Reich business is concerned, there can be little doubt that both of them studied Stravinsky's music while in school, but it is stretching things a bit to extrapolate Stravinsky's use of ostinatos (and let us not forget that ostinato technique is found in many of Stravinsky's contemporaries, as well) onto American minimalism.—Jerome Kohl 20:50, 15 November 2007 (UTC)

Stravinsky, Craft and Twelve tone music[edit]

I think recall someone deleting a similar passage from the article. From here:

Craft recalls encouraging Stravinsky to explore the 12-tone method of composition pioneered by Arnold Schoenberg.

--Atavi 16:37, 15 November 2007 (UTC)


Kohl, Jerome (1979-1980). "Exposition in Stravinsky's Orchestral Variations". Perspectives of New Music. Vol. 18 (No. 1/2): pp. 391–405. doi:10.2307/832991. Retrieved 2007-11-19. 

You rang? Yes, that is my article.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 21:21, 19 November 2007 (UTC)
 :-) I will copy it to the references section. Unfortunately I don't have access to the whole article, and even if I did, I don't know how much I'd understand.--Atavi (talk) 21:38, 19 November 2007 (UTC)
Are you sure it wouldn't be better placed in the Further Reading section (unless you mean to insert a citation somewhere in the body of the text—which seems unlikely, if you cannot access the complete article)? I believe you would find it perfectly comprehensible; it is not all that "technical" an article, and has one musical illustration that should make everything plain.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 22:57, 19 November 2007 (UTC)
You're quite right; this belongs to the further reading section. I wasn't intending to cite it anywhere inside the text of the article. I will move it.--Atavi (talk) 18:33, 20 November 2007 (UTC)

Maria Malina Stravinsky's birth and musical involvement[edit]

Something is garbled in the quotation below from the Stravinsky article (retrieved 2007 December 15 at 22h30 UTC-6):

. . . and their second daughter, Maria Milena, was born in 1945.she was a flute player During this last pregnancy, Katerina was found to have tuberculosis, . . . .:

Can someone straighten out the confused punctuation and meaning? If the date is correct, how so?

Richard David Ramsey (talk) 04:38, 16 December 2007 (UTC)

Stravinsky and the Pianola[edit]

I was slightly surprised but very pleased to find Stravinsky's involvement with the Pleyela treated as the first main topic in the section devoted to his time in France. I have edited it for accuracy and put in a reference to my own article on Stravinsky and the Pianola. I don't like pushing my own name, but in this case it's the only detailed article on the subject.

If you are going to alter the stuff on Igor's work with the various player piano companies that crossed his path, do look at the Pianola Institute website first. I try to keep a reasonably accurate page about him there. I have transcriptions of all his correspondence and other documents concerning the player piano, which I transcribed at the Sacher-Stiftung in 1987. The subject is quite large and has been almost universally ignored for decades.

Thanks to international co-operation with other roll owners, I am starting work on a new edition of the rolls, which will take a few years to complete. You can find me via the Pianola Institute at

One aspect that needs a good postgraduate to tackle is the manuscript of the 1923 solo Pleyela version of Les Noces. It is the only such manuscript which I know to have survived, and it is located at the Pierpont Morgan Library in New York. Anyone interested?

Pianola (talk) 03:44, 19 December 2007 (UTC)

Misdirecting footnote pointers[edit]

Is it just my browser, or are all of the footnotes after no. 20 (in the section "Serial") misdirecting to somewhere in the middle of the References list? (These are the notes displaying as the second column.) If this is happening generally, does anyone know why, and how to fix it? It is extremely annoying.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 03:39, 6 March 2008 (UTC)

Fedorovich or Fyodorovich?[edit]

Someone recently changed the spelling of Stravinsky's middle name from "Fyodorovich" to "Fedorovich". My Norton/Grove Concise Encyclopedia of Music says "Fydorovich", which also seems likely since "Fyodor" is a Russian name. Does anyone have any reason to think that it's "Fedorovich", or should I change it back? Jjshapiro (talk) 20:05, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

No idea, but Wikipedia:Romanization of Russian#People should be able to help (sorry, no expert). Anyway, Grove's is not the nec plus ultra for spelling Russian names in Wikipedia environment. --Francis Schonken (talk) 20:37, 28 May 2008 (UTC)
It was either a vandal or an ignoramus who changed it, probably the former, since there is a trail of three edits with successive corruptions, probably meant to mislead an editor into a simple revert to a previous vandalized version. In Russian orthography the (Cyrillic) letter е (without the two dots) represents a sound sometimes transliterated as "e" and sometimes as "ye"; the letter with the two dots, ё, sounds like "yo", and is normally so transcribed. This can also be seen in the phonetic transcription at the head of this article. The composer's father was named Fyodor (Ignatievich) Stravinsky (in Cyrillic characters Фёдор Игнатиевич Стравинский), and by convention Russian names of sons add the father's given name with the suffix "-(o)vich" meaning "son of". Hence, Igor is the son of Fyodor, who in turn is son of Ignatii (Ignatius, or Ignatz). I have reverted the spelling to "Fyodorovich", which is also the transliteration found in New Grove.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 20:55, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

Stravinsky's "Personality" section and antisemitism[edit]

I feel compelled to start by describing how I came upon the material I'm going to write about. I was interested in finding more material about Pierre Souvtchinsky. Obviously I web searched. I didn't find much about him, but I stumbled about this page: Robert Craft on Stephen Walsh’s Stravinsky: The Second Exile. This produced two things for me:

1) On that page it says:

He could also be remarkably inconsiderate of his younger son, Soulima. In the 1930s, for example, the composer, electing not to attend the young man’s debut piano recital, asked Vera Sudeykina to go in his place. Again, more than twenty years later, after agreeing to a reunion with him in Venice, but being preoccupied with completing Agon, he sent a mutual friend, Lawrence Morton, as a substitute, with the warning “he is very stupid.”

In the Wikipedia article, it is written:

Stravinsky was also a family man who devoted considerable amounts of his time and expenditure to his sons and daughters

I don't see how the two passages can be reconciled and I'm inclined to edit the Personality section.

2) and more important. Reading the sentence

Intent on clearing Soulima’s name, both as a World War II collaborator

I was curious about Soulima's relationship with Nazism, so I web searched for "Soulima Stravinsky Nazi". Again, I did not find much material for the intended search, but I did find the book: Taruskin, Richard (2000). Defining Russia Musically: Historical and Hermeneutical Essays. Princeton University Press. ISBN 0691070652.  which devotes several pages —at least from p. 454 to 459— to Igor Stravinsky's antisemitism, even mentioning evidence of Stravinsky sympathizing with Nazi Germany and seeking its favor.

I think that this issue merits at least a few lines in the article, but I wanted to discuss it first.

PS: I just noticed a relatively new discussion on his relationship with Italian fascism.--Atavi (talk) 20:25, 23 July 2008 (UTC)

--Atavi (talk) 20:20, 23 July 2008 (UTC)

Father's nationality[edit]

We say Polish. His own article says he was Russian-Ukrainian. I know the nationality of Slavic people is a vexed question, but we need to at least get some consistency between the two articles. Can anyone shed any light? -- JackofOz (talk) 22:55, 30 September 2008 (UTC)

There is an article in the New York Times Book Reviews that covers this very issue in detail, and states, "The Stravinsky family, like the name, is Polish, a fact which needs to be stressed in view of recent and perfectly understandable attempts by Kiev scholars to claim Stravinsky as a Ukrainian of Cossack lineage." -- Stravinsky. Obviously, the Ukrainians want to claim him, just bec. his father Fyodor Stravinsky, a singer, studied in Kiev. Let's get real. This is too controversial to just insert without discussion, as someone from Canada (possibly of Ukrainian heritage) recently tried to do (without even making an effort to back it up with proof). --Skol fir (talk) 06:26, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

Composer project review[edit]

I've reviewed this article as part of the Composers project review of its B-class articles. This article is still B-class; the substantive issues identified in the FA review nearly two years ago are still largely present. This article needs the attention of a copyeditor to improve the language, and a subject expert to help better organize it. There is enough content here; it is largely the presentation that stands in the way of FA. My full review is on the comments page; questions and comments should be left here or on my talk page. Magic♪piano 14:08, 13 January 2009 (UTC)

Anonymous as a ref[edit]

Perhaps I'm wrong but citing "Anonymous" seems a little silly. If I had to apply any policies to it, I'd say it's not verifiable or reliable. The ref is only placed once (that I saw) but I wanted to see if anyone had a good reason not to remove it before I go ahead and do it. OlYellerTalktome 15:12, 17 June 2009 (UTC)


I thought we didn't do this for composers? Have I missed a discussion? In my view the infobox detracted for several reasons: it makes the image smaller for no reason other than to make room for a repetition of information that is already in the lead; it apparently gives "pianist" equal status with "composer", whereas he is clearly known as a composer first and foremost; it misleadingly includes the flag of the Russian Federation (did it exist in 1882?); it listed piano as both "instrument" and "notable instrument", which I didn't understand; it attempts to pigeonhole him as "neoclassical", but only a relatively small number of his works are neoclassical, some are serial, some may be described as expressionist - how do you pigeonhole such an individual artist? To sum up, I thought the infobox was misleading. --RobertGtalk 15:27, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

I agree; this pretty much sums up why the Composers Wikiproject has a rough consensus not to use infoboxes (recognizing there are several dissenters). They oversimplify, and their oversimplified information competes with the article. I think it is a disservice to readers to present anything misleading that can be taken away in a ten-second glance, and that is exactly what will happen: a bored student with an assignment to learn about Stravinsky would add the words "pianist" and "neoclassical" to his paper, not having learned either their weight or significance in the career of this singularly un-pigeonholeable musician. Antandrus (talk) 15:33, 17 June 2009 (UTC)

Reception: Philosophy of Modern Music[edit]

This paragraph strikes me as complete twaddle. It says nothing useful about Stravinksy's music nor his life. He was not insane, and neither was his music.

OK, so people at the time thought his music sounded "mad". But the references quoted in the paragraph merely dress this notion up in academic clothes. By the way, I think Henri Bergson was mad, but then I have only read him through Bertrand Russell.

Perhaps the article would be better served by replacing this incomprehensible ramble with some contemporary quotes from music reviews and the general press.

Boynstye —Preceding undated comment added 18:57, 10 July 2009 (UTC).


Garion96 wiked away a category associating Stravinsky with antisemitism, claiming that it's "not mentioned in article"; but it is. See the quotation below:

The quotation appears in the external links.

Also see discussion supra on this page concerning Stravinsky and fascism. Rammer (talk) 22:13, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

These are two external links in the external links section, no category should be added based solely on the external links section. If it's important information it should be added to the actual article (the prose part) afterwards a category could be added. Garion96 (talk) 22:25, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

Igor Stravinsky book[edit]

There is now a Wikipedia Book on Stravinsky: Wikipedia:Books/Igor Stravinsky. This is a collection of all relevent articles that can be downloaded in PDF and printed. Edits and comments at its talkpage welcome. --Jubilee♫clipman 02:35, 13 December 2009 (UTC)


Where is a discussion of Stravinski's heavy involvement in Walt Disney's FANTASIA??? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:08, 15 January 2010 (UTC)

Mug shot and urban myth of Stravinsky's "arrest" in Boston for Star-Spangled Banner[edit]

The infamous photo of 4-15-1940 has no relationship to the Boston performance of the Star-Spangled Banner on 15 January 1944. Should this photo be restored is a decision I'll leave to others -- I see no need, unless combating this common urban legend a priority -- but the context is certainly not the Boston Star-Spangled Banner incident (not arrest). Might help to have these sources handy if shot added back to article.

"police in Boston did take this “mug-shot” on 15 April 1940, but obviously in connection with visa matters that very day"

H. Colin Slim. Stravinsky's "Four Star-Spangled Banners and His 1941 Christmas Card" Music Quarterly Summer-Fall 2006; 89: 321 - 447

He also cites ref I cited, p. 152 of Stravinsky: The Second Exile: France and America, 1934-1971 by Stephen Walsh:

Paulscrawl (talk) 04:18, 24 May 2010 (UTC)


There is an ongoing discussion on how to best organize the Stravinsky-related articles. Please comment at the above link. Headbomb {talk / contribs / physics / books} 11:03, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

Zevon reference[edit]

I don't think the reference was irrelevant. Stravinsky obviously formed a big part in Zevon's style. 01:03, 10 October 2010 (UTC) Feeling Free

Not irrelevant, but trivial in the context of an article about Stravinsky. In an article on Zevon, a reference to Stravinsky would be an important thing to include, but how important was Zevon to Stravinsky's life? Look at it another way: how many people besides Zevon were influenced by Stravinsky, and how should we sort this list, which must run to thousands or even hundreds of thousands of names?—Jerome Kohl (talk) 22:05, 12 October 2010 (UTC)


How should one refer to Stravinsky's Octet? Is Octet an acceptable (or frequently-used) title for this work – it appears to be from this article – or should it always be be Octet for Wind Instruments? The article List of compositions by Igor Stravinsky does not italicise any part of its mention of this work, but red links only the first word and captitalises in a way that implies a proper name; "Octet for Wind Instruments (1923)". Some guidance would be helpful here in deciding on whether this work needs inclusion in certain disambiguation pages.

Many thanks, --MegaSloth (talk) 23:46, 6 November 2010 (UTC)

You should start at Wikipedia:Manual_of_Style_(music)#Classical_music_titles, which explains why the title is not italicized. As for the Stravinsky Octet in particular, it depends a bit on how formal the context is. Generally, it is referred to simply as the Octet, but in a formal work list it is usual to indicate the instrumentation, hence "Octet for wind instruments" or "Octet for winds".—Jerome Kohl (talk) 06:16, 7 November 2010 (UTC)
It's shown here as Octet for Wind Instruments - is that correct or incorrect?
What would the correct article name be? Octet (Stravinsky), or Octet for Wind Instruments, or...?
Thanks. (talk) 01:35, 9 November 2010 (UTC)
Publishers' style sheets vary. Obviously, Eric Walter White's publisher italicizes all work titles, but this is not usual in the field (see the appropriate sections of the Chicago Manual of Style, or D. Kern Holoman's Writing about Music. It is also not Wikipedia style.
If I were starting a Wikipedia article about the work, I would title it "Octet (Stravinsky)", since that would be sufficiently unambiguous (there are many octets for winds, for example Beethoven's Octet in E-flat major, op. 103).—Jerome Kohl (talk) 02:19, 9 November 2010 (UTC)
Thanks. (talk) 02:28, 9 November 2010 (UTC)
An update: there is now the article Octet (Stravinsky). I finally broke down and began it, though it could still use quite a lot of work—Jerome Kohl (talk) 00:45, 24 February 2011 (UTC)

Coco Chanel & Igor Stravinsky[edit]

Real culture vs. pop culture? Anyway, shouldn't there be a reference to this film, irrespective of the amount of authenticity? RenniePet (talk) 20:26, 5 December 2010 (UTC)

The movie is referenced indirectly in the section on "Personality". See here: Recent modification to article. As the novel came first in 2002, that is the reason for using it as the source to support the "rumors" of a relationship between Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky. BTW, I am currently reading the book, and it is very well written. I will suspend disbelief for the duration of the reading! --Skol fir (talk) 19:12, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Still, imaginative fiction cannot be used as evidence of biographical facts. If the novel is based on rumour, then that rumour must exist somewhere outside of the novel. The article on Coco Chanel similarly lacks a reliable source for even the rumour on which the novel claims to be based. By all means include the novel and the film in a trivia section somewhere, but don't confuse fiction (however enticing) with evidence.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 22:55, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
There was another well-documented affair with a lady named Vera de Bosset (lasting from 1921 until his wife Catherine's death in 1939, after which it could no longer be considered an affair, as he later married Vera in 1940). See the section on France. So philandery could have been a pattern in Igor's life, although we have only the biography by White as a reference for this (Stravinsky the Composer and his Works by Eric Walter White). As for his devotion to his own family, we can reference Catherine And Igor Stravinsky: A Family Chronicle 1906-1940, which is already in the Bibliography of this article. In this book we read from Theodore Strawinsky, "A devoted father already, Igor was touchingly attentive to his firstborn. This is the first memory that I have of my father, Igor Stravinsky." He goes on to recount his first memory of his father at three years of age.
--Skol fir (talk) 23:44, 28 December 2010 (UTC)
Fine, so do it, already! Ah! I see you have done. Excellent.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 00:31, 29 December 2010 (UTC)

Infobox for classical composers[edit]

This item could be submitted to the NPR show Whad'Ya Know? I did not know this, about the infobox ban for classical composers. User:Jerome Kohl recently removed the infobox here—added by an anonymous editor from SC, USA (not me!) which I had valiantly tried to improve, not realizing that the box itself was "item non grata" at such articles. Thank you, Jerome, for stepping in. --Skol fir (talk) 23:08, 23 January 2011 (UTC)

New copyright information[edit]

Attention other editors: please fix this information, format it properly, etc: The works of Igor Fydorovich Stravinsky are in danger of becoming copyrighted, despite their existence in the public domain. More information can be found at (permanent link(s) may exist, it is unknown if this link is permanent. Other authoritative sources should also be consulted) - forgive my rash intrusion on wiki's methodology, but I felt this was important enough to justify it. signed by... (talk · contribs)

Promoting other recordings of Stravinsky music[edit]

I don't think this article is the place to insert advertisements for recordings of Stravinsky's music. The section Recordings deals only with those recordings that included Stravinsky as performer. Other recordings are not to be promoted, as it is not the job of Wikipedia to sell records. This happened recently, where a conductor (ID = RebornBosc) is promoting himself by trying to insert a reference to his latest recording of "Les Noces" as a conductor. Although this is a real item (to be released in January 2012), the Stravinsky article is certainly not the place to flaunt it!

That being said, it does look like a good recording though... "*Virginie Pesch (s); Katalin Varkonyi (m-s); Pierre Vaello (t); Vincent Menez (b); Scob piano quartet, Percussions de l'Orchestre National de France et de la SMCQ de Montréal, Choeur de Radio France, René Bosc, conductor (release date: January 2012)" -- René Bosc conducts "Les Noces" by Igor Stravinsky (1923) SACD trailer n°1.

Also listen to this portion of a rehearsal for the recording, with the percussion and keyboard instruments. Interesting indeed! -- René Bosc conducts "Les Noces" by Igor Stravinsky (1919) instrumental ensemble / no chorus!.

Maybe it can be placed here: Les noces. --Skol fir (talk) 14:51, 28 January 2012 (UTC)

Discographies are not necessarily discouraged on Wikipedia, I think, but to list one recording at the expense of all others would be a violation of WP:NPOV. For a composer like Stravinsky, making a comprehensive discography would be a Herculean, perhaps even impossible task, and would take up a disproportionate amount of space. Even restricting the list to just the recordings conducted and supervised by the composer makes it a long one, which is why the discography was moved to a separate Igor Stravinsky discography. On the other hand, discographies do exist in some of the article on single compositions. I see this recording has been added to the section "Notable performances and recordings" in the article on Les noces, but this is problematic, because that section does not included a comprehensive discography, and it is difficult (though not impossible) to argue that a recording is notable when it has not yet been released.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 21:13, 28 January 2012 (UTC)
Yes, I placed the recording in the Les noces article, having seen it already at the French article for Les noces, because I thought it was notable for the choice of instruments. Instead of 4 pianos, they used 2 cimbaloms, a harmonium and a pianola, which as you can see from the article follows the original instructions of Stravinsky, also used in the debut performance of the 1919 version: "The première of the 1919 version of Les Noces, with cimbaloms, harmonium, and pianola, took place in 1981 in Paris, conducted by Pierre Boulez." So, that is probably the "authentic" version, others being adapted from that for various reasons. --Skol fir (talk) 21:44, 28 January 2012 (UTC)
An earlier version is not usually regarded as more authoritative, even if sometimes a very late retouching of the score (e.g., the 1947 version of Petrushka) may be regarded with some suspicion. As explained in the Wikipedia article, there are actually three versions of Les noces, the first of which uses a full orchestra. The second version (with cimbaloms, etc.), which was first performed only in 1981, has been recorded a least once before, but only in the surviving incomplete form (tableaux 1 & 2). If this new recording relies solely on the instrumentation for notability, then is is somewhat less notable than the older recording; if it is the first recording of a completed version, then this is a different matter. Even the first version (with orchestra) has been recorded twice, back in 1974 (in a recording which also includes that early recording of the first two tableaux of the 1919 version with cimbaloms, but using pianos instead of pianolas: Columbia M 33201, conducted by Robert Craft), and again in 1988, in a version completed by Harkins, Craft, Cortez, and Matthews (Hungaroton SLPD 12989 (LP) & HCD 12989 (CD), conducted by Péter Eötvös). The Craft recording is referred to obliquely in the Wikipedia article, but the Eötvös recording is not mentioned at all, while at the same time there are reports of other, later completions and orchestrations, leaving the false impression that they are "firsts".—Jerome Kohl (talk) 23:07, 28 January 2012 (UTC)
Jerome Kohl, if you watch the Trailer No. 1 that I gave above as a link on YouTube, you will see briefly flash before your eyes: "Les Noces -- version définitive de 1923". I guess that means it is the complete version, right? That was the year the ballet premiered in Paris. I assume it was complete at that point, but who knows? --Skol fir (talk) 23:21, 28 January 2012 (UTC)
Although not the last word on the subject, the following "Programme Note" by Steven Stucky is worthy of note! -- Igor Stravinsky : Les Noces (1923 orchestral version) (orchestration Steven Stucky 2005). See what you think of that. --Skol fir (talk) 23:34, 28 January 2012 (UTC)
We are probably using different terms to define the same thing. Steven Stucky starts numbering his versions with the two incomplte preliminary drafts; what he refers to as "version 3" is what I call "version 1", since it is the first reasonably complete version. The "version définitive de 1923" is in fact the familiar one with four pianos. I can only speculate that this new recording may take the final version and revert the scoring to the 1919 version (my version 2, Stucky's version 4), which is the one that Craft recorded back in 1974, only with the substitution of pianos for pianolas. I understand that there are still other, intermediate versions, but they are all very tentative and incomplete, differing mainly in their orchestration, which caused Stravinsky an unusual degree of trouble.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 01:52, 29 January 2012 (UTC)
So, with your numbering system, the "definitive version" of 1923 (for four pianos) is actually version 3 (of the complete score). The new version (2005) orchestrated by Stucky cannot be called version 4 because Stravinsky had nothing to do with it (unless Stucky had some sort of seance with the great master while working on his version!). As a matter of fact, Stucky could have actually met Stravinsky in person, as their lives overlapped. Stucky was 21 when Stravinsky died in NYC, and could have visited him there. That last sentence is obviously pure speculation. Anyway, Stucky calls it "Les Noces by Igor Stravinsky, orchestrated by Steven Stucky (2005)" and even agrees it should not be called version 6 (Kohl# Version 4). --Skol fir (talk) 19:26, 29 January 2012 (UTC)
I couldn't help noticing that Stucky and Stravinsky both start with "St" and end with "ky". Coincidence? Maybe. :-) --Skol fir (talk) 19:29, 29 January 2012 (UTC)
I added some more information to my entry at Les_noces#Notable_performances_and_recordings, which summarizes what we discussed, and adds some more "notability" to this recording. I realize that my original addition of this 2011-'12 recording was an example of Wikipedia:Be bold. Let's see if anyone else pipes in on that page, Les noces. --Skol fir (talk) 20:07, 29 January 2012 (UTC)

Inconsistent use of American and British English[edit]

I am proposing to change any American English grammar and words to British English, for the sake of consistency. Any objections? Hel-hama (talk) 07:28, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

There is certainly a dissonance in this article between British and American usage, which goes back a very long way in the edit history. As far as I can tell, the earliest versions with distinctive traits are British rather than American forms. Stravinsky's eventual American citizenship may argue against this, but it seems to me a weak argument. As an American myself, I must of course come down on the side of UK usage ;-). Change away!—Jerome Kohl (talk) 08:13, 19 February 2012 (UTC)
If you do, I suggest adding the template {{Use British English}} to clarify the situation for later editors. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 12:14, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

Inconsistent Bibliography[edit]

I am proposing to standardise the bibliography where there is missing or incorrect information, etc., for the sake of consistency. Any objections? Hel-hama (talk) 07:13, 21 February 2012 (UTC)

A quick glance does not reveal to me where information is missing. Could you point me to an example or two? I ask because I did vet this bibliography myself a year or two ago, but a number of things have been added since then.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 20:02, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
A second look, this time at the changes you have recently made, indicates that you have actually introduced inconsistencies, for example in the entry for the Poetics of Music, which has been changed from Chicago style to APA style, evidently by choosing a template designed for APA. Because this implies changing all the inline citations from Chicago to APA as well, I think this should not be done without prior discussion. Do you have a reason for changing citation style, or was this simply an oversight?—Jerome Kohl (talk) 20:14, 21 February 2012 (UTC)
Definitely my oversight, so I've amended accordingly. With regards to the bibliography: it is written in the Chicago style and the Further Reading section is APA, so I assume that the latter needs to be changed; some of the citations (e.g. Aaron Copland's book) lack an ISBN or a OCLC number; I presume all abbreviations such as 'NC' and '(pbk)' should be written in full; the publishers have not always been given (e.g. Craft); Stavinsky's 1936 book is detailed along with details of later editions - it will need to be clear for the reference section which is the edition to refer to (other instances of this need to be addressed); Lawson - editor's full name to be added; Karlinksy - spell check the article's title; check for full stops (e.g. Eksteins). Hey but it's an amazing Bibliography...Hel-hama (talk) 18:03, 22 February 2012 (UTC)
Very good, and thanks for the specific examples. With ISBNs and OCLC numbers, I don't think it necessary to spell out the abbreviations (I have seen hundreds or even thousands of such entires on Wikipedia and cannot recall seeing a single case where they are spelled out—OCLC itself uses abbreviations). Of course, books published before the early 1970s do not have ISBNs (Copland's book is a good example), and in any case ISBNs are not obligatory on Wikipedia, even if desirable. I shall start checking for missing publishers' names. Tracking down which edition(s) of Stravinsky's Chronique are being cited in the text could prove a little trickier. It may be necessary to supply multiple listings in the bibliography for the different cited editons; if the inline citations are not clear about the edition, we may have to tag the notes for verification of the source until the right one can be ascertained.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 18:19, 22 February 2012 (UTC)

From Saint Petersburg or Lomonosov[edit]

This edit removed the Category:People from Saint Petersburg from the article, leaving Category:People from Lomonosov. This doesn't seem to follow the advice at Wikipedia:Categorization of people#By place. If the article should have such a category at all, Saint Petersburg seems more relevant. I suggest to restore the category or remove Lomonosov as well. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 15:04, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

I presume the rationale was that Category:People from Lomonosov is a sub-category of Category:People from Saint Petersburg, though the editor should have explained this in the edit summary. But reading the article on Lomonosov I get the impression that it is regarded as a separate place rather than a suburb of St Petersburg, so perhaps the two categories should be independent. If so, then it seems reasonable for Stravinsky to be in both, since he was born in one place and grew up in the other. --Deskford (talk) 18:07, 15 April 2012 (UTC)
You're probably right about the editor's rationale. Unsurprisingly, it was the same editor who created and then changed the categorisation of Category:People from Lomonosov. I strongly suspect that in 1882 Lomonosov was not part of Saint Petersburg. I'm sure that Stravinky was more influenced by his time there than by his accidental birth in Lomonosov where his parents were on vacation. As I wrote above, Wikipedia guidelines recommend not to categorise people by place merely because they were born somewhere. I know it's small beer, but I suggest to use the Saint Petersburg category. -- Michael Bednarek (talk) 10:56, 16 April 2012 (UTC)
Agreed. I've changed the category. --Deskford (talk) 15:24, 16 April 2012 (UTC)

Unclear lead[edit]

What does the expression "clarity of form ... and of utterance" mean? Toccata quarta (talk) 15:34, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

"Life in France"[edit]

Clarified some ambiguities, added some facts, re-organized for better chronological flow. Still working on this section. Yankeecook (talk) 12:48, 21 May 2013 (UTC)

"MUSIC: Russian Period"[edit]

Updating this section to include (among other things) scholarship by Richard Taruskin and Stephen Walsh. Ongoing. Will be adding all lacking citations, and eventually revising following sections as well. Yankeecook (talk) 16:18, 21 May 2013 (UTC)

Proposing Restructuring[edit]

Most articles about major composers (see for example Richard Wagner or Johannes Brahms to cite but two) place a section entitled "Works" immediately after the biography. I'm proposing to change the section titled "Music" to "Works" and to move it immediately following Stravinsky's biography. Further, I'm also proposing re-editing both sections to minimize duplication of information. Any thoughts? Yankeecook (talk) 21:06, 21 May 2013 (UTC)

The sections "Personality" and "Religion" are perhaps a logical extension of the biographical section but, then, so may "Reception" and "Awards" be so construed (or even "Music", for that matter). I'm not greatly enthusiastic about moving the discussion of his compositions to precede the "Personality" and "Religion" sections, but neither am I adamantly opposed. I do think, however, that making such a decision based on the structure of other Wikipedia composer-biography articles is a weak reason. The nature of the article content should take priority since, in one case there may be an ample and even flamboyant tale to tell of a composer's life, with comparatively little connection to a very small body of compositions, while in another case we may know next to nothing about the composer's life but a great deal about a vast and important compositional output. In Stravinsky's case, of course, we have considerable biographical information and an enormous quantity of musicological/analytical literature on the music. It almost makes better sense to merge the "Life" and "Works" into a single discussion.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 21:35, 21 May 2013 (UTC)

Thanks for the good thoughts! (Wow! That was fast!) I'm not adamant either. I do, however, feel that it is better to separate the "Life" and "Works" precisely because we do have so much information about IS, and because telling this complex story as a single narrative makes it very difficult to find specific information. In fact, I have noticed how many of IS's works have their own pages, and it seems to me that the "Works" (or "Music" if you prefer) section on this page should be a general overview with clear links to those individual pages where more detailed information can be provided for those who wish to "dig deeper." (And if such pages don't exist for specific pieces, perhaps we can create them.)

At the same time, I've noticed that some (but not all) of the "individual works" pages (e.g. The Firebird) contain considerable amounts of biographical background which is redundant to this page. Without being adamant about it (and recognizing that situations alter cases), I would prefer to see a more logical and efficient structure. I guess I feel that the only real "wikiweakness" is its "additive" nature where things get longer and longer but not necessarily better and better ... ah well ... I'll keep plugging away and welcome your comments. Yankeecook (talk) 00:13, 22 May 2013 (UTC)

"Fast"? Some might say I shoot first and ask questions later! But this is Wikipedia, in the age of electrons traveling at the speed of light, not some medieval scriptorium! I was pursuing the role of devil's advocate, trying to think of reasons why we might not want to do what seems at first sight a very sensible course of action. I do not see any serious reason why you should not proceed as you suggest. You are correct, also, about the many articles on individual works, which argues for brevity here in discussing the music. I had not noticed the level of biographical detail in the Firebird article, but that of course is another matter of concern. We are dealing here not with one article, but a complex of inter-related ones, and we should try to think globally as far as we are able.—Jerome Kohl (talk) 03:58, 22 May 2013 (UTC)